New Jerseyans Need Tax Relief — Not More Spending and Higher Taxes

By Assemblyman Ned Thomson

Assemblyman Ned Thompson

While New Jersey narrowly avoided a second straight government shutdown, the budget agreement that was achieved at the last minute will have a serious impact on area taxpayers that will be felt for years to come.

As a member of the Assembly Budget Committee, I participated in a number of meetings and listened to hours of testimony on Gov. Phil Murphy’s proposed budget that sought to increase spending by more than 7 percent and raise taxes by $1.7 billion. Gov. Murphy and the Democrat majority in the Legislature then spent much of the spring and early part of summer arguing over which of our taxes to raise.

Never, it seems, did they consider reducing government spending nor did the conversation appear to focus on reducing the burden on some of the most overtaxed citizens in the country. In fact, during the debate, serious consideration was given to additional tax hikes, including proposals to increase the realty transfer fee and add taxes to short-term home rentals — two ideas that would have dramatically impacted Monmouth and Ocean County residents. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: July 19th, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County News, New Jersey State Budget, NJ State Legislature, Opinion | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments »

O’Scanlon legislation would keep road work going, keep Monmouth Park open, in the event of a NJ shutdown

Senator Declan O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth County) announced that he will introduce two bills tomorrow in the NJ Senate tomorrow that, if enacted, would lessen the destructive aspects of a state government shutdown.

Governor Phil Murphy and the Democrat leaders in the legislature, Senate President Steve Sweeney and Assembly Speaker Craig Coughlin, are thus far deadlocked over their competing proposals to raise taxes on New Jersey residents, tourists and businesses.   If they are unable to come to an agreement, and get the legislature to concur, by midnight tomorrow, the government will shutdown.

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Posted: June 29th, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: Declan O'Scanlon, Monmouth County News, New Jersey, New Jersey State Budget, NJ State Legislature | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

DiMaso proposes school safety legislation

Assemblywoman Serena DiMaso

Assemblywoman Serena DiMaso (R-Monmouth), along with her colleagues Assemblywomen Nancy Munoz (R-Union) and Holly Schepisi (R-Bergen), today called on the legislature to take action on a 10 bill package they introduced last week to address school safety in light of the recent shooting in Parkland, Florida and other tragic incidents.

The proposed legislation is based on recommendations from two panels of experts that were set-up in the wake of the 2012 school shooting in Newtown, Conn, DiMaso and Munoz said in a joint statement.   The groups included government officials, education leaders, law enforcement, community members, school officials, teachers and parents. Read the rest of this entry »

Posted: April 4th, 2018 | Author: | Filed under: 13th Legislative District, Education, Monmouth County News, NJ State Legislature, School Safety | Tags: , , , , , | 1 Comment »

O’Scanlon Implores Assembly Speaker To Put Salary Arbitration Cap To A Vote

Senator-elect Declan O’Scanlon

Declan O’Scanlon, the Assembly Republican Budget Officer and the Senator-elect from the 13th Legislative District, today urged Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto to allow the New Jersey General Assembly to vote on permanently extending the interest arbitration cap for public worker salaries.

O’Scanlon sent Prieto the following letter:

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Posted: December 1st, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Declan O'Scanlon, Monmouth County News, New Jersey, NJ State Legislature, Property Taxes | Tags: , , , , , , | Comments Off on O’Scanlon Implores Assembly Speaker To Put Salary Arbitration Cap To A Vote

Guadagno offers shutdown compromise

Lt Governor Kim Guadagno. Photo credit: Tim Larsen/Governor’s office

Lt. Governor Kim Guadagno today called on Governor Chris Christie, Assembly Speaker Vincent Prieto and Senate President Steve Sweeney to set aside the Horizon bill that is causing the deadlock in Trenton and instead take up a bill sponsored by Assembly Members Declan O’Scanlon and Nancy Muñoz that freezes existing government employee unused sick time payouts at the amounts already accumulated while eliminatinating the practice of lump sum payouts for unused sick time for new employees.

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Posted: July 2nd, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: New Jersey, NJ State Legislature | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Guadagno calls on Murphy to intervene in budget showdown

Kim Guadagno

With New Jersey’s state government on the verge of shutting down because the Democrat controlled legislature has failed to pass a budget, Lt.Governor Kim Guadagno, the GOP nominee for Governor, has called on her Democrat opponent, former Goldman Sachs banker Phil Murphy, to intervene in the impasse.

“What is happening with the state budget is a disgusting display of Trenton politics that threatens to grind our state to a halt,” Guadagno said. “With so many problems in New Jersey from property taxes to healthcare, our leaders should be communicating with each other to pass a budget that puts the taxpayers of New Jersey first and separate the Horizon bill from negotiations so it can be thoroughly reviewed. Phil Murphy – as the head of his party – should immediately call his political bosses who are orchestrating this and tell them to stop playing politics with the lives of the people who will be hurt by a government shutdown.”

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Posted: June 30th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: New Jersey, New Jersey State Budget, NJ State Legislature | Tags: , , , , , | Comments Off on Guadagno calls on Murphy to intervene in budget showdown

O’Scanlon forces Assembly vote on property tax cap effectiveness

Democrats punt on property tax reform

Trenton, NJ- Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon, Jr. invoked a parliamentary rule on the floor of the Assembly on Thursday to force a vote on his bill that would remove the sunset provision on the arbitration cap of police and fireman salaries.

The arbitration cap was institution as part of the 2010 landmark property tax reform legislation that capped New Jersey property tax growth at 2% per year. The initial cap expired in 2014 and was renewed in 2014 with a sunset provision for the end of this year.  O’Scanlon’s bill, A-2123,would make the 2% arbitration cap permanent.

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Posted: June 10th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Declan O'Scanlon, Monmouth County News, New Jersey, NJ State Legislature, Property Taxes | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

O’Scanlon Testifies Against “Use Our Kids as Pawns to Enrich Corrupt Companies” Legislation

Assemblyman Declan O’Scanlon (R-Monmouth) testified before the Assembly Education Committee and the Assembly Transportation Committee this morning, imploring his colleagues on the committees to kill legislation that, if passed, would rip off motorists for the benefit of corrupt companies and greedy municipal official.

At the Education Committee, O’Scanlon, the Republican nominee to replace Senator Joe Kyrillos in the Senate next year, testified against bill A3798, a bill that would let the same companies that ran New Jersey’s now defunct Red Light Camera Program monitor school bus cameras and share the revenue generated by tickets with the municipalites.  O’Scanlon said the bill would allow for-profit traffic enforcement at the expense of innocent drivers.

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Posted: May 18th, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Declan O'Scanlon, Monmouth County News, New Jersey, NJ State Legislature | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Clifton Calls For First Responders’ Protection In Opioid Crisis

Assemblyman Rob Clifton

Assemblyman Rob Clifton (R-12 Monmouth, Middlesex, Ocean and Burlington) renewed his call for legislative action today on his bill (A3104) that would protect the lives and well-being on police officers and EMS personnel who administer NARCAN or similar opioid antidotes. The bill would require drug users who are treated for overdoses to undergo blood testing for infectious disease if an officer or first responder was exposed to bodily fluid.

“Every day, our police and EMS workers risk their health responding to drug-related emergencies,” said Clifton. “Narcan has been administered more than 18,000 times in this state since 2014. When the drug is administered, and during the resuscitation of the endangered user, contact with blood or digestive liquids is a common occurrence.”

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Posted: January 31st, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Monmouth County News, NJ State Legislature, Rob Clifton | Tags: , , , | 4 Comments »

FDU Public Mind Poll: New Jersey’s Government Is Inept

Voters Give Christie, Legislature low marks. No confidence in government impacting addiction crisis, State is on the wrong track

State of the State 2017(Governor’s Office/Tim Larsen)

The vast majority of New Jersey voters, 74%, think individuals and families should be most responsible for ensuring that those seeking treatment for alcohol and drug treatment find what they need, according to a Fairleigh Dickinson University Public Mind Poll released this morning. 22% think government should be most responsible for getting addicts help.

Those who favor personal and family responsibility over government intervention include 64% of Democrats, 82% of Independents and 87% of Republicans.  60% said the know someone personally who is or was addicted to alcohol or drugs.  70% said they know someone who has died as a result of addiction.

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Posted: January 31st, 2017 | Author: | Filed under: Chris Christie, New Jersey, News, NJ State Legislature | Tags: , , , , | 1 Comment »